The U.S. Department of Energy recognized the Town of Tonawanda as a SolSmart Silver designee for its Solarize Tonawanda Initiative and solar permit process.
Councilman William Conrad, who led the Solarize Tonawanda campaign, said the national SolSmart program recognizes leading solar communities that have made the solar permit process faster, cheaper and easier. To achieve this designation a community needs to show that it has reduced the steps, such as zoning and permitting, financing and installation labor, which are needed to install solar.
Supervisor Joseph H. Emminger said this designation is a signal that the Town of Tonawanda is "open for solar business."
The town also received a $150,000 New York State Energy Research Development Agency grant after completing its Solarize Tonawanda program and will be using the funds to update its zoning codes.